Android N Mockups Show Redesigned Notification and Quick Settings Panels
With the MWC 2016 done and dusted up, we are now creeping up towards the next Big Android announcement: The Google I/O 2016. In a tweet a while ago, Sundar Pichai let us in on the dates as well as venue for the next iteration of Google’s developer focused conference, where Android shares part of the stage with other Google technologies.
While Android is not entirely the point of attention of I/O, we do get treated to some of the first official images of the next iteration of Android. These come in the form of Developer Previews, which are early access system images released to help app developers adapt their devices to the latest official Android version as soon as it comes out. These are also a way to gather bug reports and feedback on changes to the Android system from early adopters, and hopefully squash them out by the final and official public release of the new Android version.
That being said, leaks and rumors about the new changes in Android N have started to flow. If we rely on the past practices from Google, the name of the next version and version number will only be revealed during the Android keynote in Q3 2016, but until then, the next version will be referred to as “Android N” in all of its documentations and resources.
Android N is rumored to get rid of the App Drawer. But that may not be the only change in the UI and its functionality that we may see on Android N. AndroidPolice has created mockups based on exclusive looks at some Android N screenshots.
Do note, these are mockups and not actual screenshots, and are based on early software. Things can and will be different from the final official version that consumers at large will be witnessing on their retail devices.
Starting off with the Notification shade, we see that the Card UI adopted as part of the Material Design guidelines is being replaced with a very flat look to them. As AndroidPolice notes, the notifications are now stretched to the full width of the device UI, and there is no separation between the individual notifications.
Also gone are the large and distinguishable icons, opting for smaller and more discrete icons but also adding the applications name. Apps will also be able to display color text elements albeit in limited areas. The notification shade also has quick access tiles in a limited form, a feature we have been seeing in custom ROMs and even Samsung’s official TouchWiz ROMs from the early Gingerbread days.
Next up is the mockup for Quick Settings Toggles:
AndroidPolice notes that there’s a sliding animation when transitioning to the Quick Settings panel from the Notification Shade, but ofcourse, screenshots can not do justice to it. The Quick Settings panel is also full width, similar to the new Notification panel. The presence of the Edit button indicates that there will be customizability to an extent, and the presence of the page indicators means that toggles will exist for lesser used features as well, which we can relegate to the second screen.
The changes bring out mixed reactions from us. While a flat UI may be a subjective preference for some users, the move from larger icons to smaller icons will affect how we perceive notifications at a glance. AndroidPolice also notes that the mockup screenshots possess an App Drawer icon as they haven’t seen any indication of a movement away from them yet. Again, things can and will change till we reach Developer Previews, and then to Official Releases, so there is a lot of time and variable factors involved in the process.
That being said, we are excited to see Google take a second look at some of the base Android scenarios and bring about changes to them. Our fingers are crossed for a positively changed future!
What are your thoughts on the Android N mocked up changes? Do you like the new set of changes, or would you like to stick with the current Android 6.0 Marshmallow UI? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!